Exercising is also a must, as anyone working in the health industry would tell you, but this post is only about my diet journey
I switched up my diet 6 months ago from eating meat 24/7 to eating only meat at dinner time and eating plant-based versions of my favorite food items for breakfast and lunch. My mother switched up her diet due to her lactose intolerance and introduced me to a “plant-based” diet. So far, I have lost 25 pounds and I’m actually feeling great.
So why did I decide to change my diet? First off, I was close to 300 pounds. 296.4 pounds, to be exact. My height of 5’10” might have dwarfed that, but to me, it’s an indication that I needed to change. Another reason was how the meat industry process the meat coming into their butcher shops, and it’s more gruesome than you think. I won’t go into details, so I’ll leave you at that.
Note: I am not a dietician nor a nutritionist or a personal trainer. If you’re looking for a specific plan, go to someone who has these credentials. What you’re about to read should not be taken as absolute advice, I’m only telling you what has helped me in making the switch.
Back to my diet, my biggest change came at breakfast time. Before I changed my diet, whatever I ate before 10am was breakfast. Last night’s pasta, a chicken patty, donuts, it didn’t matter. Now, I grew fond of cooking breakfast. I used to cook breakfast all the time when I was little, but for high school and college and even into adulthood, I would only cook breakfast maybe twice a year, but now I do it several times a week. Some days I would eat a waffle, other days it’s toast with scrambled eggs. This morning, I had a Just Egg patty with a vegan sausage sandwiched by two pieces of buttered toast. The bread gets buttered before I put them in the toaster. 10/10 would totally recommend. Now, of course, you don’t have to cook breakfast every morning — a bowl of cereal is sufficient.
For lunch, I usually go to a vegan version of my favorite snacks and meals… among them, tuna fish sandwiches, Gardein hamburgers and fish fillets, and Morning Star veggie pizza rolls, vegan corn dogs, vegan hot dogs, vegan patties, and vegan chicken strips. On some days, I would heat up last night’s dinner and call it a meal. Dinner is always a toss-up for me and remains my only unchanged meal.
I have also switched up my snacking habits. I still snack at night, but one thing I did not have was a cut-off period. Before, I would eat a bit a time before midnight. Now, my cut-off is 9pm. Any snack would do — chips, cookies, ice cream, donuts, you name it. Just have a cut-off period a few hours before bedtime.
And, no, you don’t have to completely give up the soda, but I started drinking more water than usual and only have soda on the weekends. The myth that you have to drink 8 gallons a day is just that… a myth. So is the “drinking half your weight in water” myth.
Eating plant-based food during the day has led me to a discovery — a lot of the foods I have eaten were considered “plant-based”. One example is Macaroni Salad. I LOVE macaroni salad. My mother makes the best macaroni salad. Between the noodles, mixed vegetables, and mayo… it’s just perfect. Another “plant-based” meal is rice and beans. I am Puerto Rican, Haitian, and American, and rice is prominent in both Puerto Rican and Haitian culture. I cannot cook rice the regular way for the life of me (because too many steps lol) so instead, I do 5-minute instant rice. I usually pair it up with red beans, but pink beans, butter beans, black beans, and chickpeas are also great options.
So, this has been my plant-based journey so far. However, I’m not going all vegan, but it has helped me in a way to moderate my food intake. Whether or not you’re all vegan, let me know your thoughts on dieting (if you ask me, dieting is 🤮 because of how people market it and overall, it just creates more harm than good).